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Monday, July 20, 2015

Second Chorus (1940)

Going on their seventh year in college, two aging college students (Fred Astaire, Burgess Meredith) intentionally fail to graduate in order to prolong their profitable career as a college swing band. But things change when a pretty young secretary (Paulette Goddard) comes into their lives. One of Astaire's weakest musicals, it contains the least amount of on screen dancing in his musical films. With the exception of one toe tapping number, I Ain't Hep To That Step But I'll Dig It, the few musical numbers are a dire lot. But if you're a fan of swing music, there's lots of that courtesy of Artie Shaw. The characters played by Astaire and Meredith are immature jerks who foul things up for Goddard continually so that one wonders why she keeps forgiving them! The film actually makes Astaire unappealing, something I thought I'd never say. As for Goddard's dancing, let's just say among Astaire's screen dancing partners, she's better than Joan Fontaine. Directed by H.C. Potter. With the annoying Charles Butterworth. 

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